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1970-1975 Epiphone 5102T - Tell Me More!


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Hi everyone,


Have recently purchased what I think is a breathtaking guitar that sounds absolutely spot on through a Vox amp. An Epiphone 5102T.


I've done a bit of research on these, but it turns out not much information exists. I've even contacted the guys at Gibson, who only had a bit of info from their archives, which is a description of the guitar and original price etc.




I've found out these were only made between 1970 and 1975. They were some of the last guitars made in the USA before being imported from Japan by Gibson with the Epiphone brand at that time. (check the picture of the Kalamazoo sticker below). And unless I'm blind, I don't think was played by anyone of note.


My questions for you lovely people are the following:


1. Do you know anything about these beautiful guitars?

2. How can I clean the chrome finish to make this shine like brand new?

3. Does anyone here own one of these?








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  • 2 weeks later...

Nice to see a new member from Wales on the boards (my Nan was from the other end of Wales to you, Prestatyn)...although I live in Virginia.


The 5102T. Always wanted to track down one of these, myself.


I think they were all made in Japan by Matsumoku. The "Kalamazoo" label is a bit of a red herring.




Go to the main page of the forum: http://forum.gibson.com/ and in the search box in the upper right, paste in, including quotation marks, "5102T"


You'll find 16 threads, some of them dating back years (2008, 2010, around that time). Lots of information on your guitar.


It's a great pity really, there used to be some really knowledgeable people at this forum, and it used to be a really good source of information because of them. Looking at the names in those old posts made me nostalgic - RobintheHood, JonnyG et al. It's a real shame that most of them no longer post here. This forum ain't what it was.


Anyway, that's all lost to the mists of time. But you'll find plenty of useful info in the old threads about your 5102T. Glad you're enjoying your vintage Epi!

Edited by Lord Summerisle
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Hello Lord S. Good to see a familiar face!


Hi apoc, yes, lots of previous threads here. My 2 cents, the 5102T was also released as the EA250, I believe it was the earlier version, some of which which had different 'staple' pickups. As Lord Summerisle said, definitely made in Japan, not the USA. Many of them had a Made in Japan sticker on the neck plate. I have an EA250, it's a very pretty guitar, I like the sound when it's boosted a bit, the pickups are very low output but give a nice retro 60's tone. Great action and very easy to play with the slim neck.

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They were all made in Japan by Matsumoku. they also released the Aria, Lyle, Diamond, under the same model number, with the only difference being the brand name on the headstock.


The 5102T model number was originally an Aria (Matsumoku) model number used starting 1969 until about 1975. The Epiphone 5102T nomenclature (some 5102E models as well) was only used on the first year of Epiphone versions c.1971 subsequently called the EA-250 1972-1975.


Edited by Gralst
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  • 2 years later...
  • 3 weeks later...

I have a friend that rescued one of these from a trash can.  It was a bit banged up but I cleaned it up and did some refinishing and now it is a fine looking instrument.  It is also an excellent playing guitar and I have used it on several recordings.  I am starting a new project and it is the first electric I will pull down from the wall.


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